Sunday, February 7, 2016

Author Spotlight: Al Halsey



Author Spotlight
In this weeks author spotlight, we delve into the works of Al Halsey, author of, Hellgate, Montana, a western paranormal thriller

What is your book about?

There are more than just demons and witches that haunt the daylight and the dark.
The Roman Catholic Church found men willing to take on the powers of darkness and called them The Retributors–men with a pure soul, no regrets, and no designs on a long life.
Retributor Jeremiah Brandt headed for the most supernaturally and unnaturally infected place on the frontier–the bright blue Montana Territory sky of the Hellgate Valley. The longer he stays the more he thinks of it more of than just a place to collect bounties–it’s home. He wasn’t looking to lose his heart or his life, he just wanted to do his job in relative peace. 

Yeah, right.
You mess with Jeremiah Brandt you are asking for a whole heap of trouble. If you are an unnatural messing with Jeremiah Brandt, you’re aiming for more trouble than you can handle in your entire immortal life.

What inspired you to write this book? 

I love Montana, and the Missoula area inspires me. The people, the land, the beauty of the countryside. It is a wonderful place filled with history from recent memory. The book is meant to be a tribute to the Hellgate Valley.

Who is your favourite, and least favourite, character in the book? 

The book revolves around Jeremiah Brandt, a hard drinking Baptist who was trained by the Catholic Church to hunt unnatural creatures and collect bounties on them. The idea that he is the intersection of so many different religions, mythology, and forbidden knowledge and that he functions on the edge attracts me to him.
I put a lot of thought and research into every character: even if a character is in the story for one paragraph, I may have spent a good deal of time thinking and researching them. Every character has a reason and purpose, although 1st Sergeant Sid Buford Lowther of the Illinois 157nth Cavalry, grates on my nerves. He’s supposed to.

What draws you to this genre? Do you write in any other genre? 

I have always been in love with horror, suspense, and the paranormal. H.P. Lovecraft is my favourite horror writer. I have several more books available: Mists of the Miskatonic is my tribute to Lovecraft. Kinemortophobia: Zombie Dreams for Sleepless Nights is a collection of short stories written with my long-time friend John Reed. Grave Conversations is a book of dark poetry. I have short stories in several anthologies, available on Amazon.

My first fantasy novel Empires of the Dead: Son of the Sea will be out in the next month, and Gorillas with Scissors Press will be publishing the first in my series The Chronicles of Dorian Christianson: Nephilim soon.

Is this a standalone book, or can we expect more?

This is the first of three, and all are written. The second is Retributor: Hellgate, Montana Book 2 and is out, also published by Permuted Press. The third is Salt Lake City: Hellgate, Montana Book 3 and will be out soon.

Tell me about you and what drew you to writing? Are there any authors who inspired you to become a writer yourself?

Working with children with emotional and behavioural problems for almost thirty years has been very stressful, and writing is one of my releases. Peter J. Wacks inspired me as a role model of a writer. When I first started writing, Peter would always answer my questions, no matter how silly. I respect the selflessness he showed. I doubt he would remember me, but I remember his kindness every time I sit at the keyboard.  I try to help every starting author I can and share my thimbleful of knowledge with them, partly because of him.

Other than your own book, what is your favourite novel? 

All of the works of H.P. Lovecraft, but The Call of Cthulhu is my personal favourite.

Have you written other books we should know about?

If you could advise aspiring writers on only one aspect of authordom, what would your advice be?

Never quit, keep working hard, and learn from your mistakes. Never give up.

Where can we find your book?
Amazon
Nook





Where can we find out more about you?


Facebook
Twitter


45 comments:

  1. This book sounds intriguing! I actually havent read a horror/scary book - but maybe I'll check this one out! Great interview to preview what I could expect when reading!
    Karen | GlamKaren.com

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  2. I would call it a paranormal thriller. There are moments of what I would define as horror, but it's not a full-tilt horrific book. Does that make sense? :) ~Al

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  3. I've always heard that Montana is so beautiful and I think it's neat that it inspired the author so much. This sounds like a thrilling novel!

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  4. The story intrigues me. I like reading supernatural books once in a while. I will add this to my list.

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  5. This looks interesting. My dad's cousin has a cabin in Montana he visits quite frequently and I've always wanted to visit. This looks like a good read!

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  6. What an interesting-sounding book! The author's responses were fun to read, and I particularly enjoyed his explanation of how extensively he thinks about and develops his characters.

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  7. well now this is intriguing. I am not really into horror books though...

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  8. I don't have much time to read but I envy people who make the time to do it. My 12 year old is an avid reader and she inspires me! Good luck in your blog endeavors!

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  9. I am a fan of the idea of their being retributors and its that classic divide between good and evil that I love! Look forward to reading it!

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  10. This books sounds really interesting! Adding it to my list!

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  11. wow, i don't tend to like this genre but I read the whole post as the story sounded so intriguing. Thank you!

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  12. This is so interesting! Not usually my type of reading but you have made it seem very appealing!

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  13. Sounds like a really interesting book! I am always looking for new books to read.

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  14. I love Montana. The Missoula area in particular is such a beautiful place. This is not a hack and slash horror book; it has horrific moments, but it is a much more suspenseful approach. The supernatural is alive (or dead) and well in my 1875 Missoula. ~Al

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  15. What an interesting twist to a paranormal thriller, a Western, Catholic creature hunter!

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  16. I love books like this. Thank you so much for sharing because this is absolutely the kind of book I would love to read. I told my wife and she agreed! IT's going on the list.

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  17. I don't think I ever read a book about demons and witches, (except for Harry Potter, I guess). But I can never pass up a good recommendation.

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  18. I love Montana and the Missoula area as well! What a great place for a setting. Looks like an intriguing and scary book.

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  19. Do you meet all these amazing authors in person? How can you do several interviews during one week?

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  20. Great book review. Reviews are hard to write but you've hit all the high notes in the book! Interesting book, not my type but loved the review ! Thanks for sharing

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  21. This sounds like a really interesting book. I don't usually read this genre, but having travelled to the state of Montana, I would love to see if the culture, land, etc. of the state of Montana had any play to this book.

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  22. I think this is one of those books that I would have to read during the day! I love books like this. So much fun!

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  23. Both books (Hellgate, Montana and the sequel Retributor: Hellgate, Montana Book 2) have 4.7 stars on Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/Hellgate-Montana-Book-ebook/dp/B00U6QHLE6/ ~Al

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  24. I don't like to read about demons and witches - stay away from that subject matter but I am sure some people enjoy those type of stories.

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  25. Western paranormal. That's a genre I've never heard of. The story sounds so intriguing.

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  26. The book sound interesting. We like paranormal stuff. We've been watching Grimm and the X-files here lately.

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  27. I love that the main character is a hard drinking baptist :-) This sounds really intriguing! I sometimes have a hard time with horror books (Stephen King is not my favorite) but my husband LOVES them.

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  28. This was an interesting review. I'm not a fan of the paranormal genre, but it's interesting to read about one's creative process in telling a story. Thanks for the post!

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  29. Interesting book! The author's advice to aspiring writers is spot on to any genre.

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  30. This definitely sounds like something I would read.

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  31. I always enjoy learning about a writer's process. This story sounds like something that could make an interesting TV show.

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  32. What an interesting concept. It's not usually a genre that I'm drawn too, but it sounds really captivating.

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  33. This isn't a genre I'm drawn to as I'm more of an optimistic, positive content reader. I do enjoy reading about new places though and I've never visited Montana.

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  34. omg this one sounds creepy! But very unique, I'm interested for sure!

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  35. I really appreciate all of your comments! If you take the time to check it out, please let me know what you thought of the book(s). ~Al

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  36. This sounds very interesting! I love horror/thriller novels, especially in a series!

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  37. I love the questions you ask in your interview! I think it's so cool to find out who the author likes best and least in the book. :) Thanks for sharing this book with us!

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  38. Oooooo this looks like a fantastic read!!! I need a new book so bad! Definitely putting this on my reading list!!!!

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  39. Even the font on the cover of the book is amazing! I can see this on shelf of my step mothers.

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  40. Supernatural is the best! Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!! Now it's witches, werewolves and vampires oh NO!

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  41. Sounds like a good book! I will have to check it out.

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  42. I like the title of 'Hellgate Montana' – I think it is really catchy. I don't think I've ever read a book with a western theme to it.

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  43. Hellgate, Montana was the original town where Missoula ended up. The whole valley is called the Hellgate Valley. Thanks everyone for the interest in the novel, and if you read it I would love to hear from you. Also, thanks to TP for featuring Hellgate on her blog. ~Al

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  44. I'm originally from Montana, and my writing is also inspired by growing up there. Looks like a great read!

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  45. Demons and witches and the old west! I would probably like this book!

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